back to article Guess King Battistelli's plan to fix the Euro Patent Office. Yep, give himself more power

The president of the European Patent Office has responded to a formal rebuke of efforts to impose his will on the organization by asking for more power. The man who last week was called a disgrace to his country in the French National Assembly has been accused of targeting EPO staff who opposed his reforms and of running sham …

  1. NorthernCoder
    Unhappy

    "Big Jim" Rennie comes to mind

    If you have read the Stephen King book "Under the dome" you know whom I speak of.

    1. LosD

      Re: "Big Jim" Rennie comes to mind

      ... Or seen the (rather terrible) TV series.

  2. AndyS

    Ways to get rid of him

    The article mentions two ways - end of contract, and agreement of all 38 member states.

    For the former, what date is this currently set to? I assume it is a fair bit in the future (or not even set).

    So to the second, what is stopping that happening? He's French, and they don't seem to like him. You don't normally call your high-level diplomats a "disgrace to [their] country" if they are in the good books. So assuming they back dumping him, wouldn't the other 37 be persuadable?

    1. John Riddoch

      Re: Ways to get rid of him

      30th June 2018 apparently, at least according to Wikipedia.

      1. AndyS

        Re: Ways to get rid of him

        > 30th June 2018 apparently, at least according to Wikipedia.

        Oh well, I guess we've only got another year and a half of laughing at him from over here.

        Unless his contract is extended again, of course.

        1. druck Silver badge

          Re: Ways to get rid of him

          They did try other ways of getting rid of him such as cutting the brakes on his bike. But for full comedy effect, they should have suspended a grand piano over the bike, and cut the rope to that.

          1. Mark 85 Silver badge

            Re: Ways to get rid of him

            But for full comedy effect, they should have suspended a grand piano over the bike, and cut the rope to that.

            In which case, the rope and piano would have wrecked havoc on the guy cutting the rope much like that done to a certain coyote.

    2. imanidiot Silver badge

      Re: Ways to get rid of him

      The short of it is: Politics.

      Voting to fire the head of an international organisation is likely to result in a lot of shenanigans in terms of who gets to replace the fired person, who votes to keep him and who votes him out, future diplomatic relations between countries, etc. You can be sure there is a lot of backroom haggling going on right now to see who does and doesn't support voting him out, and convincing those who don't want to vote him out (For fear of angering some other country and preventing them from getting one of their countrymen into a high level position somewhere) to get on board. This vote is not going to happen until the backroom fenagling has resulted in a certain majority vote one way or the other. Until then all those questioned will pretend it's all sunshine and rainbows.

      1. Fungus Bob
        Coat

        Re: Ways to get rid of him

        "Voting to fire the head of an international organisation is likely to result in a lot of shenanigans in terms of who gets to replace the fired person"

        Since he's French, why not let them decide. The worst they could do is replace him with their favorite comic genius - Jerry Lewis.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Ways to get rid of him

      There are other ways, but I believe most are illegal...

      1. AndyS

        Re: Ways to get rid of him

        >There are other ways, but I believe most are illegal...

        Sadly we don't have what Emperor Trump referred to as "the second amendment folks" over on this side of the pond.

        Even more sadly, it appears they may not be as active on the Left of the pond as Trump himself was previously hoping, either.

        1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

      2. ZenaB
        WTF?

        Re: Ways to get rid of him

        There are other ways, but I believe most are illegal...

        That's okay, they're an international organisation, they're not beholden to the rules of any one country..

        1. mstreet
          Devil

          Re: Ways to get rid of him

          "That's okay, they're an international organisation, they're not beholden to the rules of any one country.."

          Oh well then...People should stop get complaining, and get on with putting a piece of lead in his ear ;-)

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Do they not have...

    ..a gross misconduct clause? I think there are plenty of grounds for this from what I can see.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Do they not have...

      Hard to enact gross misconduct when the hearing is stuffed full of KBs cronies and the outcome is predetermined as no case to answer.

      Also with all countries having to agree to remove him - unlikely to happen. There is so many issues that require 100% member approval that the low hanging fruit is targeted. It only requires one country to back him, maybe in a back scratching exercise and he stays.

      I just can't understand the mentality of wishing to stay in the role - I guess it is a siege mentality. How the company can be expected to operate in any significant way towards its actual purpose is beyond me.

      It needs more powerful oversight and a better constitution.

      1. Dave 15 Silver badge

        Re: Do they not have...

        One other way of course. If all the staff that are so upset just resign on mass the resulting mess will force the hands of the governments involved

        1. AndyS

          Re: Do they not have...

          > If all the staff that are so upset just resign on mass the resulting mess will force the hands of the governments involved

          I was thinking this too, but then, maybe it wouldn't work? Maybe the EPO would just kind of, stop functioning. National bodies would pick up the slack, and the situation would resolve in a few years when his contract ended anyway.

      2. Mephistro

        Re: Do they not have...(@ AC)

        "Also with all countries having to agree to remove him..."

        At first read I also misinterpreted this paragraph in the article: "...who can only be fired before his term ends by the collective will of the EPO's 38-member state Administrative Council".

        It's a little bit convoluted, but the way I understand it, it means that the Council as a whole has to reach a decision, not that every member of the council has to agree with the decision.

        I'm not in the mood to study the EPO rules* and find whether this is the case or not, so the article might need to be corrected.

        Note*: Not now nor never! :-P

      3. Mark 85 Silver badge

        Re: Do they not have...

        I just can't understand the mentality of wishing to stay in the role - I guess it is a siege mentality.

        It's the mindset exhibited by many PHB's. The "I know best and rest of you are mental midgets."

  4. Chris G Silver badge

    Word association

    Benoit, window, window, ground, Benoit.

    1. Mephistro
      Happy

      Re: Word association

      Anything to do with "Defenestration"?

  5. Dave 15 Silver badge

    Normal

    Put someone unsuitable in charge and when they show they are acting against the interests of others fail to act and you end up with nothing.

    Brings to mind Nokia with Elop, HBOS and Goodwin, every British government and their PMs since 1945.

    No one seems willing to turn round and deal with the people at the top who take massive salaries for their massive responsibility, then fail and still keep taking the salary while blaming every one else. SACK THEM (better still hang them)

  6. chivo243 Silver badge

    It all sounds so

    Star trekkey.. You know, the outcome of the trial determined before the trail, isn't that what makes Planet Earth great?

  7. Natalie Gritpants

    Thankfully it's only patents

    It could be something important.

  8. Tikimon
    Unhappy

    Sooooociopaaaaath...

    It's not surprise to find so many in various positions of power - governmental and in business. They don't care who they screw over to get there, or who disagrees with them once in the office.

    1. mstreet

      Re: Sooooociopaaaaath...

      This is pretty much from what I've seen and heard the last few decades. Seems to me almost all people in a position of power these days are sociopaths. Not surprising though when you consider the people running the system are almost exclusively lawyers and career politicians.

      Why should we be surprised that members of the (practically by definition) most untrustworthy professions on earth, have come up with a system that protects the corrupt, the liars and the cheats.

  9. Bakker

    Fehler

    Minor correction - he isn't planning to limit his selection to staff committee members, he actually states that it will be from all eligible staff members (you seem to quote from an old document). So his scope for finding 'the right sort' is broader and almost limitless. No need to pick someone with general staff support.

  10. StuartDavid

    Problem is all patent offices (think they) own your inventions.

    Bastards at EPO stole an invention of mine - fraudulent 'obviousness' - I have never recovered from that.

    You invented a better mousetrap? Take two aspirin & go to bed. Hopefully you will feel much better in the morning.

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